Monday, February 06, 2006

End Games

I'm almost caught up on the back issues of Harper's that came with my (gift) subscription. Noticed this little remark in a fascinating article about the Army's off-the-charts war game simulations at the Joint Readiness Training Center, Fort Polk:
When the formal briefing concluded, [public affairs officer] Jim Beinkemper come out from his desk and took a chair next to mine. We talked plainly about how things are going overseas. JRTC's lavish mission-rehearsal exercises notwithstanding, the public affairs officer didn't seem to feel our present course was gong to do much to hasten the war's end. What it would probably take to get the credits rolling, he told me, was the unleashing of an atom bomb. "I know we're a kinder, gentler country these days and all that," he said. "But how did we end World War II." ("Under the God Gun: Battling a fake insurgency in the Army's imitation Iraq," Wells Tower, Harper's Magazine, Jan. 2006)
Looking past the kill-em-all-let-god-sort-em-out attitude of the statement, which I'll not be so crass as to infer as anything more than one man's bullshit idea (and a pretty bad interpretation of the lessons of World War II)...Who the hell is responsible for assigning this guy to the public affairs detail?

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